Just how addicted are we to smartphones? What does it mean for our physical and mental health, and how much does it really matter? Emily and Melanie review stats on usage, psychological research on smartphone habits, health impacts, and the unclear safety of cell phones.
I. Smartphone proliferation:
- Global cell phone subscription soared from 12.4 million in 1990 to 7 billion in 2013.
- 2.7 hours per day are spent socializing on our cell phones – twice the time we spend eating.
- The typical smartphone user spends regarding $107 monthly for wireless access-more than the typical house pays for electricity each month. –bestsmartphones.us, 10/19/13
- 15.7 billion texts are sent each month. That’s 363,426 per minute or 6,057 right this second. –Pong Research, 2013
- New moms spend more time on smartphones (their “lifelines”) than other adults. Average 37 hours per month, 20% more time than the average millennial (~31 hours). –LA Times, 10/24/13
- Research shows that 73 percent of Americans would feel “panicked” without their smartphones
- In a 2013 study, 30% of people admitted to snooping on someone else’s mobile phone
- 12% of people surveyed are concerned that smartphones are damaging their relationships
Because we use smartphones in so many different situations, and to accomplish so many different tasks, we develop a vast range of triggers and cues associated with pulling them out and looking at them.
-Antti Oulasvirta, Personal and Ubiquitous Computing
Impacts on Health: Cell Phone Radiation
- In May 2011, the World Health Organization (WHO) classified cell phone radiation as “possibly carcinogenic to humans.”
- Recall the hidden bit of legalese that comes in the safety manual for Apple’s iPhone 4: When using iPhone near your body for voice calls or for wireless data transmission over a cellular network, keep iPhone at least 15 mm (5/8 inch) away from the body, and only use carrying cases, belt clips, or holders that do not have metal parts and that maintain at least 15 mm (5/8 inch) separation between iPhone and the body.
- Manufacturers of multiple smartphone brands place these warnings on user manuals to cover themselves in what is still a legally unclear situation. Continue reading “Smartphone Addiction: Habit, Health, Happiness – Episode 28”